Orbital cellulitis causes eye movement to be restricted and painful
- Infection of the orbital soft tissues without abscess.
- Lid oedema may be cool and not tender.
- Involves eyelids, eyebrows and cheeks.
- Caused by a bacterial infection from a stye, the sinuses, or via injury to the eyelid.
- Painful swelling of eyelids.
- Eyelid appears shiny and red or purple in colour.
- Systemically unwell.
- Eye movements restricted and painful.
- Swollen lid impairs vision and prevents eye from opening.
- Bulging eyes.
- Refer patient for IV antibiotics.
Periorbital cellulitis does not lead to any visual impairment
- Also known as preseptal cellulitis.
Affects the eyelids and skin around the eyes, but not the orbit of the eye.
- Lid oedema is warm and tender.
- There is no visual loss, conjunctival oedema or protrusion of the eyeball.
- Patient is afebrile and appears systemically well.
- Tender, erythematous and swollen eyelids.
- Can spread to the orbit.
- Usually affects children.
- Oral antibiotics.
Text contributed by Dr Vasa Gnanapragasam, a GP in Sutton, Surrey.